Cabinet gives in-principle approval for disinvestment of Air India: Jaitley

Air India passenger planes are seen parked at the Chhatrapati Shivaji International airport in Mumbai India

Air India passenger planes are seen parked at the Chhatrapati Shivaji International airport in Mumbai India

The Union Cabinet, in its meeting on Wednesday at Prime Minister's house, gave in-principle approval for disinvestment of national carrier Air India, which is reportedly under the debt of more than Rs 40,000 crores.

"The civil aviation ministry's proposal for formation of a group under the chairmanship of the Finance Minister to decide the modalities of divestment process has also been accepted", he said.

On Wednesday, Mr Jaitley did not elaborate on the reasons for the government's decision to exit Air India; he said these had been mentioned on several occasions in the past.

India's Cabinet has approved a plan to sell a stake in the debt-ridden national airline, Air India.

New Delhi, Jun 28 The Cabinet today cleared disinvestment of beleaguered national airline, Air India which has floundered amid stiff competition from no-frills rivals and reported at least seven years of losses.

Trump attacks Washington Post, Amazon, over 'internet taxes'
Trump just abused his presidential power to threaten Amazon with a sales tax that they already collect. It's true he's used Twitter to attack the Washington Post , owned by Amazon boss Jeff Bezos.

The group on Air India-specific Alternative Mechanism headed by the finance minister will include Civil Aviation Minister and other concerned ministers.

Besides, it will also decide on the quantum of disinvestment in Air India and the universe of bidders. "In this country, if 87 or 86 percent flying can be handled by the private sector. then they can also do 100 percent", Jaitley said.

Air India is now entirely state-owned. "One only wished it had come 10 to 15 years earlier", Bhargava quipped.

Jitender Bhargava, a former Air India executive director who was written a book about its decline, urged the government to part ways entirely with the airline. This under-reporting is not any insignificant amount but a sum of over Rs 6,800 crore between 2012-13 and 2015-16.

It remains India's biggest global carrier, flying to 41 destinations, and has just under a fifth of the market. As of March 2017, its assets were worth about ₹40,000 crore.

Latest News